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Enter STEPHANIUM, from the house of PAMPHILUS.
I'll indulge you, my dears; but, so may pretty Venus favour me, I should have already come out of doors here together with you, had I not been sprucing myself up for you. For such is the way of woman, when she is well washed, made clean, dressed and tricked out, still is she incomplete; and a female who is a courtesan much more quickly acquires dislike for herself by sluttishness than always keeps in favour through neatness. STICHUS
That's very cleverly said. SAGARINUS
'Tis the genuine language of Venus. STICHUS
What's the matter? STICHUS
I'm in pain all over. SAGARINUS
All over? So much the more unfortunate you. STEPHANIUM
Where do I take my place? SAGARINUS
Wherever you please. STEPHANIUM
I'd like with both of you, for I love you both. STICHUS
Whack go my savings1. I'm done for; freedom has abandoned this person of mine. STEPHANIUM
Prithee, do give me room, where I may take my place, if, indeed, I am agreable. She takes her place. Now I do long to be cozy with you both. STICHUS
. I'm ruined utterly. What were you saying? SAGARINUS
Heyday! What's the matter? STICHUS
So may the Gods favour me, it never shall be otherwise this day but that this girl shall have a dance somehow. Come, my love, my sweet, do dance; I'll dance too. They rise and dance. SAGARINUS
I' faith, you shan't that way get the better of me, but what I'll have a bit of enjoyment, too, that way. STEPHANIUM
Well, if I must dance, do you then give the Piper something to drink. STICHUS
Aye, and to me. SAGARINUS
holds the goblet to the PIPER . Piper, you take first: and after that, if you tipple this off, just as has been your wont before to-day, straightway strike up some merry and amorous tune to dance to, by which we may tingle all over from our very finger nails. Pour some water here.
1 Whack go my savings: It would appear at first sight, that he has some compunctions, and intends to say, "this feast will prove so expensive that all my savings (peculium) will be wasted, and I shall never be able to buy my freedom." There can be little doubt, however, that an, indelicate pun is intended to be concealed under the expression, "vapulat peculium."
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